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Lady Cavaliers selected all-conference

The Lakeland High School girls’ soccer team had four girls receive all-Conference 27 honors.

Darcy Kilgore, Kalene Thomas, Haley Beale and Jennifer Rockwell were the players awarded. Kilgore and Thomas received first-team honors with Beale and Rockwell receiving second team.

First-year Lady Cavaliers coach, Adam Smith, was not shocked by the girls that were selected.

“It was not a surprise to me at all,” he said. “I could see that all of these girls expected more out of themselves, and that’s a good thing.”

Darcy Kilgore is a holding midfielder that ended up with six goals and four assists, scoring a little less than 50 percent of Lakeland’s offense as a holding midfielder. She also played two games at goal during the season.

“She is at the core of what I’m trying to build there, especially being a freshman,” Smith said.

Junior Kalene Thomas is the team captain and started working out in November for the upcoming season. She is also a holding midfielder that scored two goals, one of which was a game-winner against Indian River High School with two minutes to go in the game.

“She works hard and is a really good kid who is very coachable,” Smith said.

Junior Haley Beale is another team captain who plays sweeper on the team. She scored one goal this season, but being that the Lady Cavaliers had a rough schedule, she was under constant pressure.

“She is a really hard worker with really good anticipation from the sweeper position,” Smith said. “She is a vocal leader helping to lead a pretty inexperienced back four.”

Jennifer Rockwell is also a captain and was the only senior selected on the team. She plays the center midfield position, helping to control the flow of the game.

“Whenever she would get possession, she was the one who would try to build from the back and exploit our opponents on a counter attack,” Smith said.

He added that Rockwell’s leadership is going to be missed.

“She has been on few club teams and she knows how to win, and that is something she has been instilling into the younger girls,” said Smith.

Upon hearing the news that the girls had made all-conference teams, Smith called each of them and said that it was well deserved.

Kilgore, Thomas and Beale will be returning next season. Smith expects all three of them to be first team all-conference next year and to lead the team into a spot in the regionals.

“Next year I expect us to be a .500 team and to advance to regions, and all three of them are who I’m going to lean on to get us there, “said Smith.